Sunday, November 16, 2014

Are We Hiding In The Church?

Last Sunday, God was dealing with me about people in congregations hiding inside the church so they can avoid persecution from the world. Truthfully, it's a slap in the face to Christian missionaries who are ministering outside our country and are dying by the dozens for their faith in Christ. And even worse, church leaders are advocating congregations to hide in the church or don't stray too far from the church. The underlying message is that we need you to witness to fund the local church. And if the church is under budget, it means that the congregation is not witnessing to bring bodies in to balance the budget.

Jesus said in Mathew 28:19-20: 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age."

Notice what Jesus did not say. He did not say to make church members of all nations, baptizing them in the name of your local church. He said, you are the salt of the earth, not the salt of the church. Now I'm not saying that everyone needs to leave their church and that there is no need for a local church. We need that and we need to fund local churches. The focus is on priorities - His mission and not funding the church due to a deficit. Sometimes we read passages in the New Testament as a way to get people to do missions for the benefit of the local church focusing on church membership and not on a person's salvation. 

The question I pose is how are we going to reach the world if we're hiding in our church? And how are we preaching the gospel if the emphasis is on church growth? It's sad when Christians are coming from places where they are being persecuted and ministering Christ to us in our own country. 

The reason so many are hiding in the church is because their respective social clique is there; they want their special seat in the church; it's comfortable and their family's salvation is secure; they can continually be spiritually fed and not have to share the Good News to others. And for the record, if you are witnessing to someone and the focus is inviting to church without being concerned about their salvation (of if salvation is hinged on them attending your particular church), you are technically hiding in your church. 

For many of us in our respective churches, He is calling us out into the world to reach them. You have gifts that need to touch the world. You can't do that hiding in your church (yes, God is calling some of you to use your gifts specifically for your respective church, and praise God for that). But for everyone to keep hiding in the church is a sad indictment on those dying for their faith. 

When the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit in Acts 2, they stayed in Jerusalem afterwards. It took Stephen's death for them to get out and scatter (as Christ told them to before He went back to heaven). Sadly, God has to allow things to happen to get our attention; I pray this would encourage us to be proactive. The world is more in need of us than ever before.


The Mayne Man

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Did Brittany Maynard Have To Die? (Are Suicide Victims Selfish)?

Around mid-October 2014, I stumbled across this article. 

Contrary to what she felt or believed, it was still suicide in my eyes and in the eyes of others. The questions running through my mind were, "why isn't somebody encouraging her to live? Who's speaking life into her? Who is helping her with her depression? Who's praying for her, her husband and her family? Why is the media and society applauding this?"

Of course, over this past weekend, this article emerged stating that she ended her life.

This was a suicide that could have been prevented in my opinion.

This topic was heavy on my spirit this morning, and I pose a twofold question: Did Brittany Maynard have to die? Are suicide victims (to include those who contemplate and attempt) selfish? To the first question, she did not have to die that way. To the second question, I say not totally - and that's what this blogpost will center on.

A few disclaimers:
1. If you are reading this and have thought about suicide, please read this (providing this doesn't trigger you)
2. If you are thinking about suicide now, please call 911 or the Suicide Prevention Hotline
3. If you were called selfish or people chastised you because you talked about ending your life, you're not alone, read this and if you are indeed suicidal, see #2.
4. I will be ranting in a few places within this blog, but I will warn you before my rant begins.

Ok. Are suicide victims selfish? Many are going to shout YES off the top of their lungs. I disagree to a point. I believe suicide victims had help! Yes, I said it. If you do or don't follow the Bible, bear with me as I share an example. In Numbers 20, we always harp on Moses and his disobedience therefore disqualifying himself from the promised land. I believe Moses had help. The children of Israel were to wander in the wilderness back in the 14th chapter of the same book and they weren't going to the promised land. Because they weren't going and they were disobedient, they got under Moses' skin (in my opinion). And he did an act that he wasn't supposed to do. 

This example is no different to a suicide victim. Now I need to harp on the faith community in a spirit of love. 
When you tell someone to speak the word when they are suicidal and not listen to them, stopping what you're doing to pray, you are in essence telling them that I'm not going to bear your burden and disobey the very Word I'm telling you to speak. The Word tells us to bear another's burdens, love your neighbor as yourself, place other's interests above your own.

I can't stress this enough. How we treat people who are struggling with the will to live, or are currently experiencing a traumatic situation (such as a breakup, a divorce - I'll speak on that in a moment, a death in the family), will determine if they will either attempt, go through with ending their life or not doing either of those two. 

#MayneMan Rant: I don't care where you are in your life. If you know someone struggling, a condescending attitude is an easy way for someone to do something rash. You pointing your bony little finger telling them their stupid, will make them feel less than a human and will more & likely end their life. (I will address how we treat each other in the faith world in just a moment - I can't do a blog without addressing that). Accusing them of being in sin, saying their feelings and the actions that caused their predicament is ALL their fault will push a person into fritter isolation (whether they are strong in faith or not). 

When it comes to "Women & Suicide," this touches my heart to the core. No woman should ever have to carry a burden that heavy (or any burden period).  To tells woman that she has no out in a marriage is going contrary to the Bible. Jesus gave two outs (fornication or adultery). Why do we have the mitigated gall to tell her that's no excuse for divorce (when she has that option). <- sorry for not giving a warning for that rant. 

#MayneMan Rant (For Real): continuing from the last paragraph, so many people are burdening women with that God Hates Divorce when she's being abused physically, mentally & spiritually. I don't buy that! In fact, to burden a woman like that will either cause her to murder her spouse or commit suicide. 

I can't leave my fellow men out of this. When we are experiencing a breakup (marriage or friendship) and emotions were involved (or something else that's traumatic), we need a hug and just like women, we also need an ear. If we don't get it (but instead, have to hear MAN UP), don't be surprised if we close our world and do something rash. 

What troubles me is that we don't consider the other person interpersonal relationships. In many, we have a me, myself & I mentality. When we are going through, we want the world to stop for us, when others are going through, we'll give a two-second prayer (if that), talk down to them or praise God that it's not your problem. What makes this worse is we don't consider a person's heart when we relate to people. Every person is uniquely different, worthy of love & respect and may be fragile (in heart, in mind or in spirit). Suicides occur when people are feeling rejected (among teens and adults, relationship/friendship breakups are worse, especially when one is being used and kicked to the curb).

Another thing that troubles me is we take offense if someone is not having a good day. If you don't have a Joel Osteen smile, then you don't want to be bothered. If one of your children was having a bad day, you would cradle them in your arms. Why can't we do that for our brother, our sister? Jesus cradles everyone in His arms when we are hurting. We should not have to lie to people when they ask how are you!!!

The faith world can be worse. The church is supposed to be for the sick. Jesus came for the sick. Why can't we be a place of refuge for a hurting soul? Yes, we all come to church with our respective issues, but we need to be admonishing each other to greatness and not bring on further affliction to others. This is probably why folks outside don't want a part of church. Our attitudes towards real issues stink. They're hush, hush, or we tell them to deal with the pain themselves. We're real quick to give advice, but SO slow to listen. We'll condemn others who are going through, but we'll call those who we're condemning when we're going through. To the faith world, I don't want this to appear like I'm bashing you. We are all in this together. If we can stand in unity for blessings, we can stand in unity for the things that Jesus cares about. He cares about people, unity to show the world that we are one in mind, faith & spirit. 

What suicide victims don't need is added help. Most (if not all) are burden with some level of pain. Their means of coping may be different. One of the easiest ways to help is to listen to them - let them vent. After you listen, you can pray (please do it showing that you care and that Jesus cares). The minute you criticize, talk down to them, not consider their feelings, blame them for their situation or for feeling that way, you are setting the scene up for a victim to isolate, not say a word, put on a plastic smile, and then take their lives. Most victims who take their lives don't advertise it. If you have to invade their space, do it with love, offer an ear. Yes, those who commit suicide make the ultimate decision, but to say they're selfish does not help anybody. Those who lost that loved one will grieve (if they have a heart) and those that died were grieving before they took their last breath.

Suicide victims need a hug and an ear like everyone else. They don't want to die, they really want to live. When pushed to the limit, they will feel unloved. 

One final world on selfishness: you see, we innately are selfish, but to project your selfishness onto others is having their blood on your hands. Sadly, our personal selfishness is causing the death of many people (whether physical, mental, financial or spiritual).

I pray that we show more love in a world that's waxing cold and not caring about the beauty of life.


The Mayne Man

Friday, October 31, 2014

BBB (Broken, Beaten & Battered) - a poem

Today, this was dropped on my spirit. I've been in Psalms for almost 2 weeks and I call this my Psalm to God. Although this has been my life these past 2 weeks, it also sums up my life. I ask that you rejoice with me as to the goodness of God and how God has kept me. He has given me beauty for ashes and He can give you that also. 

BBB (Broken, Beaten & Battered)
Written 10/31/14 10:42am

I come to the Father broken, beaten & battered. He wants all of my pain. 
I lay this broken body down as if it were dead, so it's Jesus I gain.

Loved ones have abandoned me, but You Lord have loved me still. I surrender my life to you in all areas, and I now surrender to Your will.

I spent so many years living for me, and it has brought me nothing but sorrow. So I seek You and Your righteousness and will strive not to worry about tomorrow.

So many are living for self striving for attention, turn our hearts back to You. We will keep hurting each other if we keep doing what we do.

This 28 years of abstinence is not for me, but for Your glory. Some will mock as this testimony, but You have given me this story.

The good that I do for others is nothing but a filthy rag in your eyes. So why should I boast in them, Your dying for me is where my faith lies.

If I have to live this life alone, broken, beaten & battered; I count it all joy though my life feels like glass that's shattered.

All the pieces on the floor as no one cares to clean me up. But You are the only one to pick me up and overfill my cup.

I have loved and lost, and I have hurt those I care about. I pray they forgive me and I thank You Lord for not judging me and taking me out.

If you were brave enough to read this, come to Jesus this minute, this hour. He wants your broken, beaten & battered heart & spirit, so He can make your life beautiful as a flower.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

How Husbands Can Help Their Wives Heal

If you are a woman who's suffered any type of abuse, I dedicate this post to you. If you are a man who either has suffered abuse, or are married to a woman who has suffered abuse, I dedicate this post to you.

Over the past six years of speaking to people of all ages about child sexual abuse and suicide, I have met many people who have touched my life with their stories. Yesterday, the title for this blog was dropped in my spirit. And so many nuggets came with it. So let's partake of what was shown to me.

In a relationship (or even in a friendship), some women will not share things that have happened in their past upfront. Ladies, I will say that's OK. The one thing you don't want to do is to trigger something from your past if you're not ready to confront it. Men, when relating to a woman, we must respect their decision. We must never provoke them to go to a place where they will be fearful for their lives. So, what can men do? Pray for her, intercede for her, stand in the gap for her. Wash her with the Word in loving matter. When she's ready, just listen to her heart - that speaks volumes to her. Don't speak unless she wants your thought. And when you share your thought, never attack her. 

Men, if you're married to a woman and she has mood swings at odd times due to her past, she might run you off; blame you for things you do or you didn't do (or nit-pick things you say or do). In some cases, she might run you into the arms of another woman. Men, in reference to that last sentence, don't go off into the arms of another woman. Do you have to take her abuse? Yes and no. You married her for better or worse. When she is not in her moods, let her know how you feel (never attack her or talk down to her when you do). 

Now. If you're like me, you want to try to fix everything people are going through. The truth is, we men can't. Yes, it's our nature to do that, but when a woman is on the path to healing, there are some things she will have to face with just God and her alone.

Men, please hear me when I say this: if you don't nurture your wife when she's trying to heal from her past, know that she's vulnerable. If you're not careful, she could end up in the arms of another man (single or married).

There might be some single men reading this and asking this question: What can single men do? Easy advice: Be so focused on God and just stand in the gap as a brother in Christ. 

Men, I encourage you to stay committed to the woman God chose for you (and cover her in prayer). No matter what she does, what she's going through or what she's been through, she's under attack by the devil. She needs you in all areas. Remember there's power in two. A three-fold cord can't be broken (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12). 


The Mayne Man

Who's Crying For The Little Girl? (#stopchildabuse)

Last Thursday, that question was dropped in my spirit. When it did, my heart dropped. I couldn't help but think about all of the girls who are abused by family members, the judicial system, law enforcement, the entertainment industry, etc. I need to declare that this post is a trigger warning, so read with caution. 

Christine Caine stated that the average age of a trafficking victim is 12 years old. 1-2% of victims are ever rescued. She defines human trafficking as this: Human trafficking is the illegal trade of human beings, mainly for the purposes of forced labor and sex trafficking. As the world's fastest growing criminal industry, it affects every nation across the globe. Every 30 seconds, someone becomes a victim of modern-day slavery.

There are more slaves in the world today than at any other point in human history, with an estimated 27 million in bondage across the globe. Men, women, and children are being exploited for manual and sexual labor against their will.

Not only is this shocking, it sends a chill down my back. 

In recent interviews with men who purchased a woman or child for sex in prostitution, Benjamin Nolot, of the The Exodus Cry Movement, found there wasn’t one who didn’t have a history of viewing pornography.

In a study that compared men who buy sex with who don’t buy sex researchers found that sex buyers viewed and imitated pornography more often than the non-sex buyers.
Eighty percent of prostitution survivors at the WHISPER Oral History Project reported that their customers showed them pornography to illustrate the kinds of sexual activities in which they wanted to engage. Fifty-two percent of the women stated that pornography played a significant role in teaching them what was expected of them as prostitutes.

I know this is heavy, but I ask that you near with me if you can. We have the power to change the world and rescue these girls. 

Malika Saada Saar, the executive director of Rights4Girls, a U.S. based human rights organization for young women and girls, has this to say. 

On the 150th anniversary of when President Lincoln issued the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, which set the date for the freedom of more than 3 million enslaved Americans, President Obama called for the end of modern day slavery. The president’s historical speech delivered at the Clinton Global Initiative, called for major policy changes, at home and abroad, to combat the enslavement of millions of women, men and children.

Many of the slaves today are girls. Born in America. Hidden in plain view.

They are the lost girls, standing around bus stops, hanging out by runaway youth shelters, or advertised online. At the Motel 8 or the Marriott, at McDonalds or the clubs.

According to the FBI, there are currently an estimated 293,000 American children at risk of being exploited and trafficked for sex. Forty percent of all human trafficking cases opened for investigation between January 2008 and June 2010 were for the sexual trafficking of a child. And while the term trafficking may conjure images of desperate illegal immigrants being forced into prostitution by human smugglers, 83 percent of victims in confirmed sex trafficking cases in this country were American citizens.

The majority of these children being sold for sex are girls between the ages of 12 and 14. They are girls abducted or lured by traffickers and then routinely raped, beaten into submission, and sometimes even branded. When the girls try to run away, their traffickers torture and or gang rape them.

They are girls like Jackie who ran away from an abusive home at 13 only to be found alone and hungry by a trafficker who promised to love her like a father/boyfriend/Prince Charming. He sold her to at least six different men every night. When she begged him for food or rest, he beat her.

Young girls like Jackie are the new commodities that traffickers and gangs are selling. In many respects, the girl trade has replaced the drug trade. Drug routes have been repurposed to sell girls, along I-95, and up and down the I-5 corridor. The emergence of the Internet also allows the sale of a girl to be executed with ease, discretion, and convenience for the buyer. And unlike selling a drug, the girl is “reusable.”

The ugly truth is that it is less risky and more profitable to sell a girl than crack cocaine or meth. The U.S. government spends 300 times more money each year to fight drug trafficking than it does to fight human trafficking. And the criminal penalties for drug trafficking are generally greater than the ones usually levied against those who traffic in girls. Traffickers, and especially the politely termed “Johns,” are rarely arrested and prosecuted. Which explains the growing demand for vey young girls— at the click of a mouse, a “John” can purchase a girl online on legitimate websites like, with minimal fear of punishment.

Many of these girls who are bought and sold for sex come out of a broken foster care system. “Of the trafficking victims in Alameda County, California, 55 percent were from foster youth group homes. In New York, 85 percent of trafficking victims had prior child welfare involvement. And in Florida, the head of the state’s trafficking task force estimates that 70 percent of victims are foster youth.

Unfortunately, most child welfare systems have failed to properly identify and assist trafficked and exploited children. The protections, services, and protocols established for abused and neglected children within the child welfare system are rarely extended to trafficked girls. Instead, the girls are relegated to the juvenile justice system, criminalized for being raped and trafficked. This must be the only time in which it is the abused child is the one who is incarcerated for the abuse perpetrated against her.

But that’s the problem—these girls are not considered victims. So while in the United States, we have the very same child sex slave markets as in Cambodia, the Philippines, and India, the girls from here, the girls from Southeast DC or South Central LA, are seen as the “ho,” the bad girl, the teen hooker.

Can I ask what's up with that? Why are we neglecting children? Why are the systems set in place supposing to protect children neglecting them before our very eyes?

Now, I can't do a blogpost without addressing the faith community. Many people pray and fast for our breakthrough, and that's fine. When I read Isaiah 58:6, it talks about fasting for the oppressed and that they be set free from the chains that's binding them (yes, that's my paraphrase - smile). I pose a few questions: do we care about the souls that are hurting? In the judicial system, does a jury verdict matter when a judge will overturn it allowing criminals to walk free?

I want to close this with a call to action. Yes, we need to cry for the little girl (and all children who suffer abuse), but action is needed. 
Christine Caine said this: Human trafficking fuels the growth of organized crime, undermining health, safety, security, and the basic needs of humanity. It is the fastest growing crime in the world.
She has an organization called A21. It's a non-profit organization and A21 believes that together, we can end human trafficking. 

I encourage you to get involved by checking out her site!

I believe every child who has been abused will relate to this poem (this is from my novel Deaf, Dumb, Blind & Stupid):

Who Will Cry?
Who will cry for the little child that lives inside Of Me?
Who will cry for the little child dying to be set free?
Who will cry for the little child wounded continuously?
I will cry for the little child, For that little child is Me!


The Mayne Man

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Crab Mentality & How It Hurts Us

was sitting on the plane a few weeks ago and was wondering why we don't support each other. Other groups support each other, but in most cases, we don't. Notice I said "most cases." I asked a few friends (all of them are fellow authors) to help me understand why we don't support each other. They either gave me some reasons with explanations or they answered some questions that were going through my mind. 

I'll start with the questions first, which one fellow author answered with no shame. :)

Questions: Do you suppose that most people of our race don't want to support our vision/dream for the following reasons:
1. They fear that we will surpass their socio-economic status?
Yes, I definitely think this is true. Some people will support you until they feel like you are surpassing them. And this is especially true of self-published authors. Some of the readers/friends who supported me in the beginning, can't be found now because they think I'm outdoing them.
2. It's easier to support someone famous vs. someone local (or grew up with during childhood)
Yes because I had some friends who didn't buy my books until I made it into the bookstores. And then I had some who didn't support me until I made the Amazon bestseller's list. So if you're my friend, why did you wait to support me? You're only supporting me now because you think I'm a local celebrity because I've been in the newspaper a few times. 
3. If they support, they want something in return (or just want us to give, but will support someone 10x wealthier than them & not even thinking of them).
Yes, I always have people coming to me saying, "You're an entrepreneur, I have this great business idea to share with you." And I tell them that I already have more business than I can handle and I'm not looking for any new ventures. And these are usually people who haven't supported me but want to use me. And when people come to me saying, "Let me take you to lunch, I want to pick your brain." I usually pass because what they want is free information for a $5 meal. No thank you.

And one more thing, our people want me to publish them for free but they will pay AuthorHouse (or another vanity publisher) thousands of dollars to get published. But then they want to blast me for charging a thousand. Or they come to me after they have paid thousands to them and want me to make corrections for free...

If that isn't a crab mentality, I don't know what is. 

Another fellow author had this to say (and she also gave a great observation of how we should support each other): My thoughts are that the reasons you stated contribute to the crab mentality. In addition, many suffer from jealousy, envy, hatred and wanting to be like someone else or having what someone else has, and this is why they can't offer real support. I think people like this have internal issues that must be seriously dealt with. Most of the time, these people won't show this kind of attitude right away. But, it will certainly appear because they are poor at hiding it. Also, keep in mind that when people are miserable, they want others to be miserable too. They will often play the victim role to keep the attention on themselves so that others are distracted from supporting your vision or dreams. The crab mentality rears its ugly head in every situation when it comes to our race. We are so used to asking for a "hook up" and freebies from black owned businesses while we spend all of our money on Tommy Hilfiger, Polo and Coach... making them rich. But, really, some just don't want to see you doing better than them and that is sooooo sad. I think of Oprah and her best friend, Gayle.

The final fellow author chimed in and said this: People don't support because they don't believe in you. In other words: people often don't believe in you because of their own personal prejudices or views of themselves.

I would like to thank the three fellow authors who shared their thoughts on a topic that needs to be addressed. In lieu of what was stated above, our mentality has to change. We can no longer blame others for our own plight.

The Mayne Man

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Woman, Her Mate & Her Pastor

In a culture where people want to be so independent, we fail to see that independence, if left unchecked, will breed selfishness. I posed a question to Pastor Shantae Charles to get a woman's viewpoint on this very topic. It grieves my heart when people become so independent that they desire to tear down another person's identity in order to make them feel better. 

Now, I didn't grow up in church during my childhood, and it wasn't until I left home when I started going. One thing I have seen is this pattern: the men are in leadership positions, and get this: the majority of the congregation is women (married and single). And in some churches, people in the pews are lusting after their pastor or someone in a leadership role. So, I don't know if this left a bad taste for women to feel that all men are unlearned when it comes to the Bible, or they sense that if he is a man after God's heart, I must prove myself and tear him down to prove who I am and that I know more than him. That's truthfully pride and ego, and it's also a sin. Understand, the devil is destroying the family and keeping the head away from the church. I didn't plan to say this, but if he can separate a man from a woman, both are in danger. This is why it's so important for men & women to cover each other, grow with each other, pray and intercede for each other, and ensure they both speak words of love and respect for each other. There is no room for stripping a man's identity to prove your independence, and there's no room for tearing a woman's confidence to prove your manhood.

Ok, that was not in the script, but praise God for that. Now let me get back to the message. What I'm about say may offend some women but it's not my intention. I have an utmost respect for you ladies and I believe God has empowered you with a power that is unstoppable. If used for His Glory, it's a sweet aroma. If not, it can wreck a home and the lives of yourself and your respective spouse.

I have seen cases where a man and a woman get married, and the woman will do everything she can to undermine her husband. She will start comparing her husband to her pastor, listening to her pastor more than her husband and in some cases, she will even place her pastor over the Bible. Now with that last part: we all have a tendency to put our pastor and church over the Bible. Now if this leader tickles the ear, there's a strong possibility she will start listening more to her leader over her husband. Comments such as "the pastor said," or "what do you know, you're not a leader." One of my brothers was in the military and he had orders to move to another state. His wife was so involved with the church and the teaching that she abandoned her husband (and marriage) to stay close to the church. This brother is a man of God and is truly a brother to me. 

Regardless of where the husband is in his life (but for the purpose of this blog, I'm referring to a man seeking the heart of God), it can crush his spirit and leave a feeling that he's not respected. He truly loves his wife, and his faith is truly secure, but his ability to speak into his spouse's life is hindered tremendously. 

Now that I got that out, let me invite Pastor Shantae Charles to my blogpost. It's great to get feedback from women and I have learned with my writings, a woman's touch enhances what I'm striving to convey (smile Shantae & Cynthia - those are my editors for the benefit of those new to my blog). Pastor Shantae, I have a question for you: do you find that some women will put a pastor, prophet, etc. over their spouses? Granted, the spouse makes mistakes, they're human, but is it dangerous to put a church leader over their spouse or put both over God?

Husbands are the direct spiritual covering for their wives. However, if he is unbelieving, Paul stated her prayers could cover the family.

Pastors oversee our spiritual life in general. They are not God.

A woman with no husband is first covered by God, her natural father, and her spiritual leader, not as husband, but Shepherd. This is where singles get in trouble. Your Pastor is not your husband (or wife). Ref: 1 Corinthians 7:13-14.

Thanks a bunch. And all I can say to that is Amen. You all be blessed today. 

The Mayne Man

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Why Suffering In Silence Causes Suicide

This was an unexpected post, but this is very important. If you are contemplating or even attempting suicide, I'm declaring a trigger warning if you proceed to read it, but more importantly, please seek help. I am going to say that numerous times in this post.

You know, it's important to have people who will have your back no matter what you're going through. Some of you are probably thinking, with the people in my circle, who needs enemies. You have to say or do something drastic just to be heard. Or when you reach out, no one is there (or if they do, they're doing you a favor), but you have to be there for them when they're hurting. It's been said life is hard, and only the strong survive. There's probably a question going through your mind: how do I get strong? You start by loving the person you were created to be. It doesn't happen overnight. It might be a process especially if rejection and abuse is all you've received for most of your life. Support is needed to help you through it (and not everybody in your circle may be cut out to be your support).

When I went through my suicidal spell in 2011, I can't even begin to tell you how many people were willing to let me suffer in silence. If you are currently suffering in silence, I pray that you seek help. Sadly, there are people in this world (and they may be in your circle) who could care less if you live or die. And there are people with no conscious and will ridicule you to the point where you commit suicide to some capacity (it may not always be physical, but it could be mental suicide or emotional suicide). Adding on, there are people in this world who have no heart and their heart's desire is to point fingers at you (i.e., state that everything is your fault) to cause your suicide. 

Questions: do you feel like you're being punished in life and that your purpose here on earth is to suffer? I pray you won't feel that way as you read. Do you feel that you have to lie when people ask how are you? In fact, you know they want to see a Joel Osteen smile when the truth is, you're trying to find out how you are going to cope with the pain that's on your mind and your heart.

Now for many who are suffering in silence, it may seem like you will have to walk alone (because your circle is full of people instilling fear and judgment). Now there are some reading this telling those suffering that it's their perception and they need to change it. I challenge you to understand them so they feel like they're understood (even if you don't believe what they believe). I guarantee you, they are willing to listen if you are not pointing a finger and saying that everything from childhood till now is their fault. And to immediately say that they need to go to therapy without any emotion is going to alienate them (and cause them to feel they are worthless). 

If you are suffering in silence, you may feel like you are shut out from the world, and that you must go away. If this is you, I can imagine that you're crying right now and I feel your tears. I beg that you don't do it, no matter how much you want to.

Despite the people who want to see you fail in life, the people who want to take advantage of you, the people who want to add alcohol to your wounds, and sadly the people who want to see you dead; you have something to live for. You may not know right now, but I ask that you don't give up. It's hard when you have been rejected from heartless people and those who mean well (but can't communicate it well - to this group, don't stop loving the one who's hurting).

You may have made a mistake in life and you feel that you have to suffer in silence. If this is you, you don't have to suffer (but please be careful who you share that with). Finding the right person may be hard, and I would be less than a man if I didn't say that. As a result, you may feel forced to suffer in silence. 

Let me say this: God is listening and He knows where you are. When no human being wants to listen, He will. He knows that love is growing cold and that we lack long suffering (patience). He knows that we fail to bear each other's burdens and that we're selfish at times. He knows that you want to just crawl up into a ball and die even as you are reading this right now. 

If you are reading this and you know someone suffering in silence, please don't X them out of your life. They really do need you. In fact, you could not only save their life from suicide, but you can help them advance to the next level in their lives. That does not mean you say "Get over it!" Or "It's Gonna Get Better," and leave it at that. Don't accuse them and make them feel as if they are at fault. Build them up with words of healing and strength. For an exercise: look at Ecclesiastes 4:9-12. If you know someone who is shutting the world off because they are wounded, and feel like they are being judged (or they won't be heard), keep seeking them and pray for them. People are dying by the dozens daily because they are suffering in silence and they feel like they are to suffer alone. The reason why suffering in silence causes suicide is because they feel like their suffering alone. They don't want to die, they want to live. Cliches truthfully add more wounds to them. Their pain can go all the way back to childhood or it can be recent such as a breakup of a friendship/relationship. 

In closing: if you are suffering and need someone to listen, please call a therapist, or a good friend who won't judge you and add further inflictions to your wounds.


The Mayne Man

An Abused Woman Does Not Need A Spineless Man

This title was on my spirit as I was getting ready for work this morning and I believe that more women will read this than men (in all seriousness, men NEED to read this). 

A few disclaimers before I begin:
1. If I had to subtitle this blogpost, it would be An Abused Man Does Not Need A Prayerless Woman.
2. This blogpost is NOT intended to bash men; in fact, it's a plea for us men to wake up and understand the role we are to play as men (and husbands, though I'm not one as of yet).
3. If you are with someone who has abandoned you, I'm not saying you should just up and divorce him or her. Please seek God about it.
4. I want to extend a huge shoutout to the men who are covering their wives, praying over them if they have been abused, and are interceding for their healing. Sometimes you men are overlooked, so brother to brother, I stand with you. You are proving that there are men out there with spine.

Why does an abused woman not need a spineless man? First and foremost, women hurt easily than men do. The last thing they need is a weak man who will not be the support she needs. Ever since I released by 2012 novel DDBS, I have met a lot of people from all different walks of life. I have ran into a few scenarios that have left me concerned. One is where the woman has suffered childhood trauma and her husband is leaving her to suffer alone. I speak in many different outlets, and when a woman shares her abuse, I'll ask if she's married, where is her husband? I ask because he needs to be involved. Before I dive further as to why he needs to be involved, let's look at a familiar passage. 2 Samuel 13 is used a lot to address Tamar & her being rape, the sin of Amnon and the type of people (Jonadab) you don't need in your life (as he was an accomplice to Tamar being raped). I want to approach this passage from another perspective. 

Let's look at verses 1-22: Now Absalom, David's son, had a beautiful sister, whose name was Tamar. And after a time Amnon, David's son, loved her. And Amnon was so tormented that he made himself ill because of his sister Tamar, for she was a virgin, and it seemed impossible to Amnon to do anything to her. But Amnon had a friend, whose name was Jonadab, the son of Shimeah, David's brother. And Jonadab was a very crafty man.
And he said to him, "O son of the king, why are you so haggard morning after morning? Will you not tell me?" Amnon said to him, "I love Tamar, my brother Absalom's sister." Jonadab said to him, "Lie down on your bed and pretend to be ill. And when your father comes to see you, say to him, 'Let my sister Tamar come and give me bread to eat, and prepare the food in my sight, that I may see it and eat it from her hand.'" So Amnon lay down and pretended to be ill. And when the king came to see him, Amnon said to the king, "Please let my sister Tamar come and make a couple of cakes in my sight, that I may eat from her hand." Then David sent home to Tamar, saying, "Go to your brother Amnon's house and prepare food for him." So Tamar went to her brother Amnon's house, where he was lying down. And she took dough and kneaded it and made cakes in his sight and baked the cakes. And she took the pan and emptied it out before him, but he refused to eat. And Amnon said, "Send out everyone from me." So everyone went out from him. Then Amnon said to Tamar, "Bring the food into the chamber, that I may eat from your hand." And Tamar took the cakes she had made and brought them into the chamber to Amnon her brother. But when she brought them near him to eat, he took hold of her and said to her, "Come, lie with me, my sister." She answered him, "No, my brother, do not violate me, for such a thing is not done in Israel; do not do this outrageous thing. As for me, where could I carry my shame? And as for you, you would be as one of the outrageous fools in Israel. Now therefore, please speak to the king, for he will not withhold me from you." But he would not listen to her, and being stronger than she, he violated her and lay with her. Then Amnon hated her with very great hatred, so that the hatred with which he hated her was greater than the love with which he had loved her. And Amnon said to her, "Get up! Go!" But she said to him, "No, my brother, for this wrong in sending me away is greater than the other that you did to me." But he would not listen to her. He called the young man who served him and said, "Put this woman out of my presence and bolt the door after her." Now she was wearing a long robe with sleeves, for thus were the virgin daughters of the king dressed. So his servant put her out and bolted the door after her. And Tamar put ashes on her head and tore the long robe that she wore. And she laid her hand on her head and went away, crying aloud as she went. And her brother Absalom said to her, "Has Amnon your brother been with you? Now hold your peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this to heart." So Tamar lived, a desolate woman, in her brother Absalom's house. When King David heard of all these things, he was very angry. But Absalom spoke to Amnon neither good nor bad, for Absalom hated Amnon, because he had violated his sister Tamar.

Notice that King David was angry, but he couldn't do anything. Why? Two chapters back, he slept with Uriah's wife and had him killed when she informed David that she was pregnant. It was at that point where David was spineless because he could not even cover (protect) his own daughter. Absalom had to step in the role of what David was supposed to do. And it was to cover Tamar. That was David's responsibility to cover Tamar because she wasn't married and not Absalom's. But praise God Absalom covered her. And that's what Christ does when His children are hurting. 

So what am I saying? Husbands, if your wife is fighting for her healing, trying to get her life back after it was stolen due to trauma (sexual, physical abuse), it's imperative that you don't render yourself spineless. She is counting on you to cover her and be her support. 

Men, if you are single, you can cover a woman who's hurt as a friend. Be mindful of her emotions and yours (it's easy to be led on and of course - in some cases, one thing can lead to another). And the tragedy is that there is a broken friendship that could have been avoided. But praise God for restoration in Him. For He wants His children to be on one accord.

Let me get back on track. It saddens me when a man knows that his wife is cutting her leg to numb the pain and he's off in a different room as if she doesn't exist. Husbands, 1 Peter 3:7 says to dwell with your wives according to knowledge. Couples as they are courting need to lay their cards on the table. If a woman is in counseling, the rightful thing for a husband to do is support her, pray for understanding, and if you can attend with her, please do. That would make her feel special. To know that someone is willing to fight for her when people who have hurt her will seek to discredit her. 

A spineless man cleaves to his wife, but he doesn't leave his family. That can have great repercussions, because families (especially if their house isn't in order), can sow negative seeds in him and they fester in the marriage (such as, leave her, you don't need to deal with her trauma from her past). A husband with a spine knows that Christ covers His bride, and he would do the same for his bride. 

Now, there may be times when a woman is healed (or waiting for the manifestation of her healing - for whatever she's been through), a husband must stay in prayer in the event a trigger may arise in her (or God shows her something from her past that needs to be addressed), so he can be there when she needs him. The same holds true in reverse when a man has been hurt. She needs to be in prayer for him (and he desires to be whole). There may be cases where either spouse don't want help, advice: stay in your closet and intercede. Wait for God's instructions and not your friends. 

A little off subject, but I must say this: some of you husbands have a good woman. You know it, your wife knows it and God knows it. If your wife is going through and you are living your life like you're single, ignoring the things she needs, God is going to deal with you because you are technically abandoning her and the relationship (some of you might disagree with me on that, and that's fine). If she's cutting, her family is disowning her because she's speaking out of what happened to her, and you're emotionally absent or physically absent from her (or perhaps you're escaping into the arms of another woman), don't think you are getting away with it and you are emptying the emotional bank account the moment you neglect her when she needs you most. Yes, she's the weaker vessel, but at the same time, it does not give us men the right to treat her any kind of way. That is showing the world how spineless we are as men. I've said this for about 20 years and I believe it to this day: most of the problems some women have stem from our behavior and how we treat them. No one (inside or outside the church) are holding them accountable. Let me lighten up for a minute and say this: I understand that there are men who fear commitment and that's fine. Just don't drag another person into a relationship and you don't understand what a commitment entails. You will damage your life and hers. In a nutshell: commitment is sacrifice. You are giving up your life for something or someone you love. When you give it up, it requires all of you. No holding back. Before committing to a relationship, understand the cost (Luke 14:28).

A small note on men who have been abused: Women, I plead with you not to automatically assume that because he's been abused he's living an alternative lifestyle. I'm proof that I'm heterosexual and just waiting to place the glass slipper for the Cinderella God has for me (smile). I get this question a lot when I speak at different venues. We men don't need judgments from women, but we do need women who will pray for us, stand in the gap for us, and most importantly, respect us. Now there are some men who won't share their story with their spouse. Let me say that will set you up for failure. When a trigger occurs in you, she will not know how to respond (whether she's praying for you or not). I beg you men to let your spouse know if you've been abused and what triggers you. Don't be afraid to ask for help. She will appreciate that and support you.

In summary: communication between a husband and wife is critical. If there is no communication, there is a breach in the relationship. A genuine relationship should have no breaches. And that will happen when husbands & wives understand their roles. 


The Mayne Man

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Should Women Knuckle Down To The Devil? (Domestic Violence Awareness)

This was just dropped on my spirit. I don't know if this blog post is going to restore marriages for women, but I believe this will save women's lives and set them free. Sometimes we harp on women for leaving their husbands when they are emotionally abusing, physically abusing to the point of death. I'm not just talking him throwing his fist at her, but also throwing hot oil at her, biting her ear off, and maiming her. I don't care if he is in the church or not, she should NOT have to knuckle down to the devil like that. For any person (saved or unsaved) to tell a woman she should stay in the relationship because God hates divorce, you are telling her to bow down to the devil because YOU want to see a Miracle. God would never tell anyone to submit to the devil. Men like that should be held accountable - a crime was committed. 

To tell a woman she should separate and pray is fine, but she needs to protect her life. God would never tell a woman to knuckle down to the devil with her life (and especially when her man is spitting on her, degrading her position as a wife, etc).

Yes. We are to present our bodies as a living sacrifice, but not at the hands of the devil. Now many people are not going to agree with me with this part (especially those who are adamant about God hating divorce). You see, if I were to hit a woman, you know, I know, God knows & the devil knows that you (and those close to you) would see to it that I'm behind bars. And to allow abuse like this to go on in the church, is a stench in the nostrils of God. The bridegroom doesn't hurt the bride, so how dare we give men in the church a pass to hit women and turn around and tell women to submit and pray for your relationship. She should pray, yes; but truth is, he stepped out of God's will and into the devil's hands (and truthfully, she's free). Now think about this: what makes you think the man is going to want a woman to leave a relationship when he has that much power? He (being used by the devil) will use the control that the woman (and those who are adamant about God hating divorce) to further torture a woman. Why? Because we are not tuned to the truth about what God wants in a marriage relationship and we want things to fit our little box. Truth be told: there's a strong chance that with the advice you're giving others, you wouldn't even do. 

So, what am I saying? Don't put yourself in situations where your life is in danger due to a violent spouse, don't allow a faith community to allow you to stay in a relationship where they condemn you for speaking out, and they advocate spousal beating and torture. Faith communities need to hold people accountable and stop focusing on miracles, signs & wonders without unity and one accord with God's Word. 

Women: can I make this small disclaimer? You might be a praying woman, and will not take any garbage from the devil; if you continually submit yourself to any type of abuse as mentioned above, you are actually submitting yourself to the devil to the point where your life is threatening. God wants you to be whole and for you to live in the fullness of Him.

As a bonus: to the right of this blog, check out the video Pieces of Me skit (based on my novel addressing domestic violence). If you can't view it there, just click on this link:

I pray that this will set you free if you are tired if knuckling down to the devil in the realm of relationships. Yes, it does take two to tangle in the relationship; acknowledge the wrong you've caused, and now it's time for you to be free to be loved by someone who is truly committed to God's Word. But more importantly, you should be free to love God for who He is. He's a healer, protector, provider, and a Savior who would never hurt you if You are in Him.


The Mayne Man